ENTRIA final report

How can we shape complex negotiation processes in the context of nuclear waste disposal? For five years, the ITAS final repository team has dealt with this question in the framework of the interdisciplinary ENTRIA project. The results are now available.
ENTRIA Abschlussbericht

The ENTRIA research platform, set up by BMBF (Federal Ministry of Education and Research) in 2013, has contemplated the options for the disposal of high-level radioactive waste in Germany and has established ties between disciplines that are far apart. With their work on “Governance between science and public protest”, researchers at ITAS have significantly contributed to the success of the interdisciplinary and problem-oriented project. The recently published final report (full PDF) presents a variety of results.

Forms of modern governance

Key findings of the ITAS work do not only identify modern forms of governance, they also provide a broader theoretical understanding of political regulation in this special disposal process. This includes both a reflection of the governance theory and a reference to the modified political and societal framework conditions in Germany. According to the ITAS team, political actors have to pay more attention to regulation processes in nuclear disposal policy and here especially to the aspects of cooperation and coordination (see ENTRIA final report, pp. 210-217). The governance concept helps to better describe such decision processes and provides new opportunities to identify alternative lines of action if the search for a repository site becomes difficult.

The in-depth analysis of the German case also showed that long-term questions are of particular importance for the construction of a nuclear waste repository. This led to the establishment of a new strand of research on long-term governance in ITAS.

International comparative studies

Using international comparative studies on Switzerland and Sweden, researchers were able to demonstrate how societal actors are involved in disposal policy elsewhere and what is expected from successful decision processes. International comparisons also indicate that the disposal of high-level radioactive wastes always includes complex negotiation processes between politics, the economy, and civil society.

Detailed results on technology assessment and governance can be found in the final report on pages 364 to 376.


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